A little less than 30 km from Masseria Baroni Nuovi, in the province of Brindisi, stands one of the most fascinating cities in Puglia: Ceglie Messapica.
A labyrinth of paved alleys of the so-called ‘white chianche’, arches and stairs where you can savor the many scents of this land rich in food and wine excellence.
Perched in the southern part of the Murge plateau, straddling the Itria Valley and Salento, the city of Ceglie Messapica stands on a hill, from whose top stands the Norman Tower.
At the behest of the Sanseverino family, in the fifteenth century the manor acquired the features of a noble residence studded with noble banners and frescoes.
In the historic center, the architecture of the buildings reveals the elegant soul of Ceglie: from the eighteenth-century Palazzo Allegretti which, overlooking Piazza Vecchia, houses the Pinacoteca ‘Emilio Notte’ and the municipal library, in Palazzo Epifani, close to the castle, up to the ashlar of Palazzo Vitale.
Of Messapian origin, Ceglie is surrounded by terraces full of trulli and dry stone walls while a triumph of stalactites and stalagmites drapes the Caves of Montevicoli, about a kilometer from the inhabited center.
The alleys overlook the little whitewashed houses with their flowered balconies and the windows with four piers protruding at the corners.
As a good Apulian reality, Ceglie Messapica is known as a Slow Food presidium.
Ceglie is today recognized nationally as a center of excellence as regards gastronomy, thanks to the many awards obtained by the chefs operating in the area and the recently born cooking schools.
Worthy of mention is the Ceglie Messapica biscuit, an irregular cube-shaped pastry made with toasted almond paste and stuffed with cherry or grape jam and flavored with a light citrus fragrance.
“U’ Piscquett “boasts a long peasant tradition: it was prepared for large parties or wedding banquets and to embellish wedding favors. Today the biscuits are found in local bakeries, bars and patisseries and are all to be enjoyed accompanied by sweet local wines or combined with homemade rosolio.